Ring of Honor: Unity

Chicago Ridge, IL – 4.28.2012

Championship Rundown
ROH World Champion: Davey Richards
ROH Television Champion: Roderick Strong
ROH World Tag Team Champions: The Briscoes (Jay & Mark Briscoe)

Commentary is provided by Kevin Kelly and Steve Corino.

The All Night Express (Kenny King & Rhett Titus) vs. The House of Truth (Roderick Strong & Michael Elgin)

Elgin shoves Titus to the corner. Titus gets a waistlock. Elgin backs him to the corner to break it. Titus clothesline him in the opposite corner and gets one with a bulldog. Titus gets one with a dropkick also. Strong and King tag in. King Japanese armdrags his way out of a wristlock. Strong takes him to the mat in a headlock. King reverses into a headscissors. King trips Strong into his own headlock. King hits a springboard dropkick. Titus follows up with a splash for two. ANX then deliver a Manhattan drop/clothesline combo for two. Strong kicks out Titus’ surgically repaired knee so he can tag in Elgin. Titus’ shoulder blocks won’t move Elgin. Elgin gives him a bodyslam. Elgiin sends Titus to the apron. Strong enzuigiri’s Titus before dropping him onto the apron. Titus’ knee got hurt, so Elgin targets that when Titus slides back into the ring. Strong gets in his own offense, even mocking King in the process. Titus suplexes Strong to give him the opening to tag King in. King throws some punches at Elgin. He slides out of a slam and tornado kicks him in the back of the head. He spinwheel kicks Strong. King back elbows him in the corner. Strong accidentally clotheslines Elgin (though Elgin barely budges). King gives Strong a spinebuster. King shotgun knees Elgin for two. Elgin evades some ANX offense. He Samoan Drops King and fallaway slams Titus simultaneously. Elgin and Strong bicker as Elgin tags him in. King tackles Strong out of the ring. Elgin buckle bombs Titus. The spinning powerbomb would get Elgin the win, except referee Paul Turner is busy checking on Strong, who seems to have hurt his knee. Elgin forearms Titus and puts him on the top rope. Titus goes for a sunset bomb. Elgin blocks, so King gives him a gamengiri. This allows ANX to hit the One Night Stand for the pin at 14:58. I enjoyed this for a few reasons. The action was good, but didn’t do anything to spectacular to outshine later matches. ANX winning makes me happy because I really want them to be the guys who take the tag belts next. Finally, this was more build to Strong and Elgin’s inevitable split. **3/4

Elgin gets in Strong’s face. Both guys seem game to have a fight right now. Truth Martini is able to calm them down…for now!

Mike Bennett and Maria Kanellis make their way out to the ring. Mike Bennett was told to find a tag partner, so he called his trainer and manager Brutal Bob Evans. He had nobody good enough in Boston to partner with him. Instead of having a match, he plans to have a make out session with Maria. Out comes Mike Sydal with a referee. Sydal makes himself sound totally bush league by saying he takes opportunities when people are injured or there’s an open match. So basically he’s not good enough to be booked, so he waits around in the hopes of getting booked. To make this even worse, Sydal says Maria smells like diarrhea to make Bennett angry. Bennett charges and we have a match.

Mike Bennett vs. Mike Sydal

Sydal has a flurry of offense. Bennett kicks him in the stomach. Sydal side steps a charge to send Bennett to the floor. Sydal moonsaults after him. Bennett throws Sydal down into the splits on the apron to block an Asai moonsault. Bennett dropkicks him out of that position. Bennett delivers a suplex for two. Sydal elbows his way out of a headlock. Bennett trips him onto the middle rope but misses a follow up splash. Sydal gives him the legdrop reverse neckbreaker for two. Sydal ducks a clothesline. He hits an enzuigiri and a standing moonsault for two. Bennett gets his knees up to block a crossbody. The TKO gets him the pin at 5:15. I will admit Bennett has improved in ring, and it’s good he got to squash Sydal, but this was just an overall waste of time. *1/4

Maria calls Sydal second place to his brother. She trash talks Chicago sports teams, fans chant CM Punk insults back are her. Both of those things are really creative and not played out. She moves onto Mike Bennett’s rematch with Lance Storm coming up at “Border Wars.” She gives Bennett an early congratulations on his presumed victory in that match.

Veda Scott is backstage with the Bravado Bros. She wants to give them a chance to re-introduce themselves. They do just that, even though Harlem says the fans can’t forget faces like theirs. They have been in the Pro Wrestling NOAH Dojo for months. They plan to show the Young Bucks just what they learned while they were gone.

The Bravado Bros. (Lancelot & Harlem Bravado) vs. The Young Bucks (Nick & Matt Jackson)

Lancelot puts Matt in a rolling Romero Special. Nick tries to interfere but trips on the middle rope. Matt rolls out, and both Nick and Harlem tag in. Nick boots Harlem after giving him some crotch chops. A leapfrog foes awry, but Harlem is able to suplex Nick after recovering. Harlem holds onto the arm. Nick rakes his eyes to switch it. Matt and Nick take turns twisting up Harlem’s arm while the other one comes off the top with a move to it. Harlem crotches Nick on the top and slingshots Matt into his groin. He kicks Nick off the top while giving Matt a tornado DDT for a two count. Lancelot drops down so Harlem can hit a dropkick. Nick shoulder blocks Lancelot from the apron. He delivers a slingshot X-Factor as Matt knocks Harlem off the apron. The Bucks bully Lancelot in their corner until Lancelot boots Matt in the corner. He knocks Nick off the apron and tags in Harlem. Harlem immediately boots Matt of the apron. He blasts Nick with a sweet bicycle kick. Harlem sole butts Nick into a fisherman’s suplex. He double knees him in the corner. Harlem superkicks Matt into an elbow from Lancelot. They both suplex Nick. Matt breaks the pin attempt. Matt sends Lancelot to the floor and follows with a dropkick. Matt suplexes Harlem into the corner for two. Matt spears him into standing moonsault/springboard splash combo from both Bucks. Harlem kicks out. Harlem blocks Matt’s kick with an enzuigiri. Lancelot knees him to the corner. He kicks Matt in the face and delivers a belly-to-belly suplex. He lariats Matt inside out for two. Matt rolls out of a Death Valley Driver. Nick knees him in the face. Harlem sends Nick to the floor. The Bravados hit Matt with the Gentlemen’s Agreement. Nick splashes Lancelot to break his bridging German suplex pin. Nick knee strikes Harlem in the corner. Nick assists Matt with a Shiranui. The Bucks double superkick Lancelot. Lancelot kicks out! Matt buckle bombs him into an enzuigiri from Nick. They set up for More Bang for Your Buck. Harlem grabs Nick’s leg as Lancelot crucifix pins Matt. That gets him the pin at 13:33. I’m not sure if words can do justice to how much the Bravado’s have improved since going to Japan. They’re barely the same team. The crowd reaction (who was 100% behind the Bravado’s) says it all. This to me is the sleeper match of the night. ***1/4

Veda Scott introduces Joe Koff, CEO of Ring of Honor. He announces that “Death Before Dishonor X” will take place in Chicago Ridge on IPPV ON September 15th. Koff mentions that every ROH title will be on the line for that show, no matter who is champion. This prompts Kevin Steen and Jimmy Jacobs to make their way out. Officials and others come out to protect Koff from Steen. Steen says he will be the champion to defend in Chicago Ridge after he defeats Davey Richards at “Border Wars.” Steen then insists BJ Whitmer and El Generico come out so he and Jacobs can start their match with them. Whitmer and Generico make their way out and an all out brawl with all four men ensues. It takes many of the attendants and officials to separate them on the floor. Todd Sinclair tells them all to knock it off. He won’t start the match until they regain order since it was signed as a regular tag match. Steen doesn’t care what Sinclair says, he wants this to be a No Disqualification match. Sinclair says he can’t make the changes unless management tells him to do so. Whitmer also wants a No DQ match. Sinclair reiterates his point. But wait! Paul Turner hands a phone over to Todd Sinclair. Jim Cornette has called in to officially make this a no DQ match.

No Disqualification
El Generico & BJ Whitmer vs. Kevin Steen & Jimmy Jacobs

Another brawl breaks out, with Generico whipping Jacobs into the barricades as Whitmer stomps Steen down in the corner. Steen attacks Generico from behind. Steen shoves Whitmer into the barricades. Jacobs does the same to Generico. Generico moonsaults off the barricades onto Jacobs. Steen jabs Generico with a chair. Whitmer hits Steen in the back with a chair. In the ring, Generico and Steen trade forearms. Generico gives him a tornado DDT. Jacobs dropkicks him to the floor. Jacobs and Whitmer simultaneously throw punches. Whitmer gets two with a fisherman’s suplex. Generico and Whitmer back elbow Jacobs. They struggle, but end up lifting Steen for a tandem suplex. Generico and Whitmer bring in chairs. Jacobs and Steen throw punches to stop their attack. Steen digs the chair into Generico’s groin. Steen leg drops a chair on his face. Jacobs digs a chair into Whitmer’s throat. Jacobs stomps Whitmer and delivers a senton. All while Steen bites Generico in the forehead. Jacobs trips Whitmer face first on the chair. Steen goes to Generico’s eyes when Generico starts chopping him. Jacobs throws Whitmer to the floor and suicide dives after him. Steen calls for a dive but ends up raking Whitmer’s eyes. Steen smacks both opponents with his tennis racket. Generico crossbody’s onto both Jacobs and Steen. He gives Steen a Michinoku Driver. Generico tope con hilo’s onto Steen. Whitmer big boots Jacobs for two. Whitmer’s Golden Gate Swing and fisherman’s suplex earn him another two count. Steen powerbombs Generico onto the ring apron. Jacobs hits the Contra Code on Whitmer for two. Steen cannonball sentons a chair into Whitmer. Whitmer helps Generico escape the F-Cinq. Whitmer lariats Steen. Jacobs uses a chair to break the cover. Jacobs uses it on Generico too. Whitmer gives Jacobs a suplex onto an upright chair. Steen makes the save. Generico exploder suplexes Steen into the corner. Steen superkicks him to block a yakuza kick. Steen and Jacobs drag two tables into the ring. Generico gives Steen a brainbuster on the ring apron! Jacobs spikes Generico in the head. Whitmer ducks Jacobs attack and German suplexes him. The table gets set up by near the corner. Whitmer ends up giving Jacobs an exploder suplex through it for the pin at 18:26. Yep, that was the crazy tag match you were hoping for. This could have stood to lose a few minutes, and it should have been a No DQ match in the first place. The pre-match stuff was completely unnecessary. Regardless, this was a very fun brawl. I’m just surprised Whitmer and Generico won. ***1/2

Ring of Honor vs. CHIKARA
Jay Lethal, Adam Cole & TJ Perkins vs. The Colony (Fire Ant, Soldier Ant & Green Ant)

Gavin Loudspeaker, the usual CHIKARA ring announcer, does the ring introduction for The Colony. This is under Lucha rules, meaning tags to a partner are not necessary. A coin toss determines that CHIKARA official PJ Drummond will be the referee for this match.

Green Ant controls Lethal by his arm. He gets one with a seatbelt pin. Lethal rolls him up for one. Green Ant gives Lethal a quesadora armdrag and dropkicks him to the floor. Perkins and Fire Ant come in as the legal men. Fire Ant rolls Perkins to the corner. Perkins huracanrana’s him to the floor and fakes a dive. Cole puts Soldier Ant in a headlock. Soldier Ant turns it into a full nelson. Cole escapes. Soldier Ant snapmares him into an arm-capture schoolboy. Soldier Ant salutes Cole after he breaks a headlock. Cole catches him with a Manhattan Drop and a Northern Lights suplex for two. Green Ant gets cut off by Cole as he comes in. Green Ant enzuigiri’s him into Fire Ant’s dropkick. Green Ant dropkicks him in the side of the head. Soldier Ant delivers a Samoan Drop. Lethal chops Soldier Ant against the ropes. The Colony deliver triple dropkicks in the corner. The ROH team regroups on the floor. Perkins counters the Antapult by pulling Fire Ant down. The ROH team triple superkick Fire Ant for two. Perkins, Lethal and Cole isolate Fire Ant in their corner. Lethal foolishly dropkicks Fire Ant to the floor, which brings in Soldier Ant. He sends Lethal out with a headscissors. The Colony suplex Cole and Perkins. They roll to the floor. Soldier Ant and Green Ant antapult Fire Ant onto all of Team ROH. Lethal gets attacked in the corner. Lethal kicks Soldier Ant. He goes for the Lethal Injection. Fire Ant grabs his legs, and Soldier Ant and Green Ant each dropkick him. Perkins gets tossed out when trying to save his partner. Fire Ant sentons Lethal, Green Ant splashes him, and Soldier Ant falls with a headbutt for two. Lethal sends Green Ant to the floor. He gives Fire and Soldier Ant the Lethal Combination. Cole dropkicks them both. He enzuigiri’s Soldier Ant and delivers a running knee for two. Cole gives him a brainbuster on his knee. Fire Ant breaks the pin. He tilt-a-whirls into a DDT for two. Perkins gives Fire Ant a neckbreaker. Green Ant dropkicks Cole to the floor. Perkins baits Green Ant to the floor. He goes for the ropes and accidentally knocks PJ Drummond down. He recovers, and Soldier Ant dives out onto Cole and Perkins. Lethal then dives onto Green and Soldier Ant. Perkins trips Fire Ant into the STF. Soldier Ant breaks it. Green Ant flapjacks Perkins. Soldier Ant, Green Ant, and Lethal all miss their dives off the top rope. Cole superkicks Fire Ant into a cradle from Perkins. Drummond is tied up with Cole and Soldier Ant fighting and can’t make the count. Green Ant shoves the cradle the other way. Drummond turns around to count Perkins shoulders to the mat, giving The Colony the win at 15:08. That was the fast, exciting match this needed to be. I thought the Colony really got the chance to shine. Then again, they also had the three guys who meshed the best with their style to help out. Wonky finish aside this was a whole lot of fun. ***1/2

Davey Richards and Kyle O’Reilly are backstage. He says Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin have beaten him in the past, but tonight’s a whole different story. He and O’Reilly have something to prove. O’Reilly says practically the same thing. Richards takes umbrage with O’Reilly calling Adam Cole dead weight. Richards says he’s in the past and that tonight is all about them.

Davey Richards & Kyle O’Reilly vs. Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin

Benjamin and Haas run down the crowd before the bell. Richards is poised to start with Haas, but O’Reilly blind tags himself in to start the match off. Haas puts on a front chancery. Haas shoulder blocks O’Reilly. They exchange boots and forearms. O’Reilly tags out when he’s angry over not winning the exchange. Richards calms him down and squares off with Benjamin. Richards catches him with a dropkick. He sends Haas to the floor with a dropkick too. After some regrouping amongst the teams, O’Reilly again tags himself in to face Haas. He rolls Haas into a cross armbreaker. Haas escapes. Benjamin tags in and takes control. He and Haas take turns wearing O’Reilly down. O’Reilly knee strikes out of a tandem suplex. Richards comes in with a top rope dropkick to both of them. Richards suplexes Haas while cradling Benjamin for two. Benjamin misses a corner splash. Richards kicks Haas from the ring apron into a chair ringside. O’Reilly gives Benjamin a Code Breaker. He dives off the apron with a dropkick to Haas. Richards double stomps Benjamin for two. He then puts on the ankle lock. Benjamin kicks him off. Benjamin fires up when Richards kicks him in the chest. Richards nails an enzuigiri. He kicks him into O’Reilly’s brainbuster. Haas breaks the pin. O’Reilly kicks the crap out of Haas in the corner, to the point where Richards has to get him focused. Haas shoves O’Reilly into Richards. Richards thinks O’Reilly may have done it. O’Reilly bails to the floor when Haas and Benjamin go after him. This is after Benjamin superkicks Richards. This leaves Richard all alone for Haas and Benjamin to kick the crap out of. Richards rolls Haas into a parachute stretch. Benjamin kicks Richards to break the hold and turn things back in his and Haas’ favor. Benjamin even grabs the referee so he won’t see a low blow. Richards is able to roll Benjamin into a forearm from O’Reilly. He tags in and boots Haas off the apron. O’Reilly sweeps out Benjamin’s legs and kicks Haas again. O’Reilly puts Benjamin in a Guillotine choke. Benjamin throws him out, so O’Reilly just applies it to Haas instead. O’Reilly gives Benjamin a chin breaker and a tornado DDT (kicking Haas in the process). Richards dives after Haas on the floor. O’Reilly has Benjamin in a Guillotine. Richards puts on an ankle lock while O’Reilly still has his hold in. Haas Olympic slams Richards. O’Reilly sends Haas to the floor after blocking an Olympic Slam. Benjamin catches O’Reilly with Pay Dirt for the pin at 21:28. So while I didn’t find anything these two teams did particularly annoying like I usually, nothing was all that exciting either. I did really think they did a good job of portraying O’Reilly as this whiny ungrateful up-and-comer with Richards played a good mentor trying to cool him down. Haas and Benjamin? Dull. Bland. Uninspired. The quicker they get out of ROH the better as far as I am concerned. O’Reilly walks to the back by himself. Hey, they left out Richards’ post-match speech off the DVD. ***

ROH World Tag Team Championship – Ring of Honor vs. CHIKARA
The Briscoes (Jay & Mark Briscoe) vs. Jigsaw & Hallowicked

Hallowicked and Jigsaw earned this shot back “The Homecoming 2012” when they defeated The Briscoes in a Proving Ground match. Gavin does the ring announcing for Hallowicked and Jigsaw. Since it’s an ROH title match, ROH official Paul Turner will be the referee. The fans are MUCH more hostile towards the CHIKARA team in this match then they were in the Colony bout.

Mark wastes no time laying in shots to Hallowicked. Hallowicked dishes out a running forearm. Mark gives him a running knee strike. Jay tags in and boots Hallowicked in the corner. The Briscoes double clothesline and double boot him, knocking down Jigsaw in the process. Hallowicked sends Jay out with a step-up enzuigiri. He suicide dives after him. Mark comes off the apron with a dropkick to Hallowicked. Jigsaw gets ready to dive. Jay boots him. Jigsaw sends Jay to the floor and Fosbury Flops onto the Briscoes. Jigsaw throws Jay into the barricades while Hallowicked and Mark trade forearms. Hallowicked and Mark throw each other into the barricades too. Mark throws Hallowicked into the ring post. The Briscoes are in full control on the floor now. In the ring, Hallowicked side steps Jay’s crossbody. Jigsaw comes in. Jay trips him and throws him into the barricades. Mark boots Hallowicked off the apron. The Briscoes wisely keep on top of Jigsaw back in the ring. Mark does a weird dance on the second rope into a senton. Jigsaw slips out of a suplex and tags in Hallowicked. He chops the crap out of Jay. M Hallowicked enzuigiri’s Mark. Jay boots Hallowicked before he can hit Go 2 Sleepy Hollow. Jay lariats Hallowicked. The Briscoes get two with the Redneck Boogie. They call for the Doomsday Device. Hallowicked however sends Jay into Mark. Jigsaw pushes Mark through the timekeeper’s table. Jigsaw comes off the top with a clothesline. Hallowicked jackknife pins him for two. Jigsaw uses Sweeney’s fist drop for two. Jigsaw ends up winning a forearm exchange with Jay. Imagine that. Mark recovers on the floor as Hallowicked has Jay in a sleeper. Jay elbows his way out of the CHIKARA corner. Mark uses Redneck Kung Fu on both of them. He enzuigiri’s Jigsaw and gives Hallowicked a rolling Death Valley Driver. He shotgun dropkicks Jigsaw for two. He gets two again on Jigsaw with a Iconoclasm. Hallowicked whips Jay into the barricades. Jigsaw gives Mark a brainbuster for two. Hallowicked Rydeen Bombs Mark. Jigsaw German suplexes him for two. Jay throws multiple jabs at both Hallowicked and Jigsaw. They end up double booting him. Hallowicked accidentally knocks down Turner as he goes for Go 2 Sleepy Hollow. Jigsaw superkicks Mark. Referee PJ Drummond runs out to make the two count. Jay ends up accidentally punching him. Jay clotheslines Jigsaw inside out and superkicks Hallowicked. The Briscoes give Jigsaw the Doomsday Device. Referee Todd Sinclair counts two. The Colony and the ROH trio come out to support their respective sides. All four men throw blows at one another. Mark and Hallowicked get sent up out with kicks. Jay drops Jigsaw with a Death Valley Driver for two. Jigsaw small packages him for two. Jay gives him a spinebuster. Mark delivers the Froggy Bow for the pin at 16:40. This was a slight step-up from their Homecoming match. The referee nonsense was unnecessary, but did add a nice moment of drama towards the end and called back to the previous “Synergy” match. The Froggy Bow getting the win sort of took the wind out of this matches sails since no one expected it to be the finish. Nevertheless, this was a strong way to end the show. ***1/2

The five CHIKARA guys stand-off with the five ROH guys. Everybody shakes hands. Everyone leaves The Briscoes alone in the ring. Jay says he knows there has been history between them, but if any company was going to share the spotlight with ROH, he’s glad it was CHIKARA. He thanks the fans for coming out.

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